Twenty two year old Charis Betts of Leicester is the new Regional Carnival Queen for the East Midlands. Charis was one of nine Carnival Queens in the East Midlands to enter the competition which took place at the Nottingham Playhouse on Saturday 1st June.
Her costume “Beauty in Perpetuity” was designed by Lincoln Rahamut, and built by participants involved in this year’s Carnival Arts Workshop organised by the Leicester Caribbean Carnival.
Charis was also declared the 2013 Leicester Carnival Queen for being the Leicester contestant with the most points for her overall performance in the competition. She will now act as an ambassador for Emccan and Leicester Caribbean Carnival and represent the region at Caribbean Carnivals and other events throughout the UK.
Juliette Brade, Co-ordinator for Leicester Caribbean Carnival said “Charis was invited to compete at the last minute after a member of the group was unable to do so for personal reasons. She had less than one hour to practice in the costume the day before the show and had to be rushed from her workplace on Saturday evening to Nottingham to enter the competition. This young lady was the perfect replacement and her performance on stage was second to none. She was a clear winner from the moment she entered the stage”.
Dennis “Sugar” Christopher, Chair of Leicester Caribbean Carnival was delighted that Leicester won. He said “I am very pleased for Charis and all the volunteers and helpers who worked on the costumes. This is an indication of what is expected for Leicester Caribbean Carnival this year. Visitors to Leicester can look forward to an exciting line up for this year’s Street Carnival”.
Donna Fox, Strategic Manager of emccan (East Midlands Caribbean Carnival Arts Network) stated ” The Queen Show took an exciting new format this year, attracting £9,900 from Awards for All – Big Lottery funds to involve local young people in creating a Carnival Arts production. The four key partners – Derby, Leicester, Northampton and Nottingham Caribbean Carnivals, really pulled out all the stops to produce elaborate, colourful Carnival Costumes in such a tight timeframe. I was overwhelmed by the energy and commitment of the young people, and the wonderful array of colours and intricate detail in the Leicester costumes. It was a tough decision for the judges! ”
Next year’s competition will be hosted by Northampton Carnival.